Snowshoeing Off HWY 88 ~ What a View
Mudd Lake Recreational Area Snowshoeing Adventure
New Years Day 2017, a beautiful bluebird ski and great temperatures before the next storm rolls into the Sierra. Time to strap on the snowshoes with my oldest son Brandon and try out a new area in the Sierra. The Silver Lake region on HWY 88 is one of my favorite summer lakes to explore. Yet I have never made it up to the Mudd Lake or Tragedy Springs area to explore.
Not knowing what the snow conditions were like past Kirkwood resort, I didn’t actually have a destination in mind to snowshoe for the day, after passing Silver Lake we decided we would just pull over anyplace that had parking and looked like we had good snow to trek through. Mud Lake Recreational area is directly across from the entrance to Tragedy Springs Campground, several cars were pulled off there so we stopped to take a look. Spoke with one gentleman at his car that told us about the views up top and we knew we had found our destination for the day.
After strapping on the snowshoes and packing our packs we headed out following the snowmobile tracks up the hill. You pass several cabins right off the road, (Cabin Envy is real) with private property signs displayed but the road must skirt their property as the forest service Recreation signs are just past the last cabin.
The climb up the mountain is immediate, on snowmobile this is no problem, on snowshoes, well let’s just say I know that my cardio needs improvement. The forest on the right side is open and beautiful, the cliffs on the left side give you one heck fo a view of the Silver Lake region that only get better as you climb.
The View at the top of the mountain is spectacular as you can see mountain peaks in all directions.
After the photo and rest stop, we started making our way down the backside of the hill. This is a forested walk that can be via, snowmobile track, Road or just a leisurely stroll through the woods. We choose a combination of all three as we circled back on the hillside maintaining a decent elevation and not dropping all the way down into the Mud Lake flats area.
The Snow had a great little ice crust on it, and the snow was light and powdery underneath so it was an easy walk with that fresh cold sound of crunching snow under the snowshoe. We saw our share of animal tracks but nothing was moving in the forest for us today. Guess my heavy breathing scared them all away.
Two hours later we started making our way back to the cars, glad we had not went down hill much as I don’t think I wanted to climb the hill again. However, I had to stop and take a couple more shots of the Silver Lake area before we came off the mountain. I look forward to coming back again this winter and this summer to explore more of the area.